4 Tips to Deal with Worker Shortages

Worker Shortages have Employers Scrambling

 

Recent articles mention skilled worker shortages and call attention to the continuing pressures on employers. Established workforce management methods don’t seem to keep up with rising demand and  competition for truly valued skills.

Our U.S. economy has created new jobs annually since 2009. Even so, there are increasing worker shortages. The need for cost control and efficiency will be part of effective recruitment and contingent staffing strategies. Factors including quality of candidates and workforce retention may combine to make firms increase future wages more quickly.

 

Flexicrew continuously studies market trends.  So, we have broad familiarity with worker shortages.  We see that firms who overcome talent and worker shortages deliberately use four successful staffing strategies.

Successful Staffing Strategies for Employee ShortagesMap of U.S. worker shortage by region

  1. Widen the External Candidate Pool:  Forward-thinking employers define their position requirements with a greater degree of flexibility. That frees them to interview candidates that have the right skill-set regardless of employee type.  In some cases this includes waiving college diplomas in favor of comparable experience.
  2. Examine Internal Employees:  Beyond where to recruit and what kind of employee to look for, effective organizations increasingly examine their current employees. That lets them fill positions quickly, minimize risk of a bad hire and manage changing skills demands. This trend is growing particularly as worker shortages continue.  A winning internal employee approach includes training, skills development and cross-functional partnership. Those steps help overcome workforce shortages. Companies get experienced people for higher-value jobs who already fit the culture and understand the company’s approach.
  3. Pay Hike:  Of course there is another approach to worker shortages – offer higher salaries.  Naturally, that has implications for costs and profits and could lead to competitors following suit.
  4. Adapt to Change:  Talented staffing partners offer more than recruiting positions and selecting candidates.  They apply competence, automated processes and technology to manage shifting staffing requirements.

Forces Driving Workforce Change

At the same time, employers need a thorough grasp of the forces driving future workforce changes. That will help guide operations and HR managers stay aware of dynamics shaping  talent management and staffing strategies where worker shortages exist.

At Flexicrew we understand your continuing pressure to produce results even with severe worker shortages.

Also, we understand the requirement for strategic, flexible workforce management approaches. That lets us help employers quickly and effectively obtain contingent and permanent workers.

Call us if you sometimes have trouble finding enough skilled employees.

Ask the Flexpert…Job Descriptions – Do they Matter?

Why formal job descriptions?

Ask the Flexpert

Ask our Flexpert any job description questions to get it right.

Hiring organizations have no legal obligation to develop, maintain or periodically revise job descriptions. By the same token, there are multiple advantages and legal upsides that make that practice useful.

 

Good job descriptions perform several important functions

They are especially useful if they are carefully written, maintained and used.

They describe the key elements, specifications and functions of every job for employers. Formal job descriptions are the basis for setting expectations for positions.  They reflect the skills and experience job candidates must have.  They are also useful as a basis for performance appraisals.

Likewise, they provide benefits to other teams or individuals who interface with a certain position to know what to expect from that function.

Key components

Then, let’s define some important parts.  For instance:

  • Job titleList of The right job description elements
  • Goals of the job
  • Pay rates
  • Hours/shifts, overtime and weekend work
  • Exempt/non-exempt status
  • Employee benefits
  • Organization reporting relationships/hierarchy
  • General duties including descriptions of significant activities
  • Position duties which make up the main part of the job’s actions
  • Background including experience, education, licenses, credentials, training, and necessary tech skills
  • Harsh states such as: contact with severe temps, prolonged standing, heavy lifting,  major overtime, etc.

Summing up

In other words, job descriptions are key details of every job, for every firm.  We described how good ones perform many central functions.  We also outlined how to write clear, concise and accurate job descriptions that define defined roles.

Also, have new-hires sign employment contracts.  They should state that they have received their job specs, reviewed them, and agree what’s assumed in their role.  This can better protect and inform both employer and employee.

Want to find out how to access Flexicrew’s broad network of skilled workers and professionals?  Contact us today!

Or ask us to review your firm’s job descriptions.

 

Introducing the Employer Advocate

Launching Flexicrew’s Employer Advocate

We’re very excited to launch Flexicrew’s Employer Advocate.  We will post on many issues – from using a staffing agency to using seasonal workers, from risk of law violation in hiring, to retention of quality talent.

Talent acquisition and workforce management are difficult, so we will provide tips and shortcuts from our experience.

The tone will be serious and conservative – meaning factual – but with a light touch to make dry subjects readable.

Employer Advocate Feedback

Periodically, we will ask for your feedback by having a periodic survey or poll on the blog.

We hope you ask questions about what interests you because the Employer Advocate must be a useful tool for you. In other words, we plan to blog what you want to read.

Employer Advocate Content

How will we achieve this?

In the first place, the blog will offer content in several categories:

  • Staffing agency
  • Temporary employees
  • Industry trends
  • Best safety practices
  • Useful resources from the web
  • Flexicrew Company
  • News
  • Valuable insights from human resource articles

 

So, welcome to Employer Advocate blog, the online magazine devoted to:
• Helping you take the next steps in managing your workforce.
• Getting the most productivity out of your workplace
• Enhancing your career
• Meeting your goals.

Explore content focusing on important aspects related to achieving your ambitions and balancing your personal life on your path to career success.

Your Turn

In fact, please give us your feedback  and pass along any topics you would like us to address.

The Five Common Hiring Mistakes to Avoid

Overview of Common Hiring Mistakes

Are you making one or more of the five most common hiring mistakes?

Some hiring mistakes are caused by picking the wrong candidate. But more often, hiring mistakes come down to poor preparation, poor hiring skills and worse, your company’s poor structure.  And then, other hiring mistakes are really a result of errors a company makes handling employees after the hire – not developing the new hire or not weeding out the underperformers.

(To check yourself, look at these additional frequent hiring mistakes we wrote about a while back. These could reduce your hiring mistakes and Picture of apples and a bad apple sticks outimprove your sourcing decisions.)

Hiring mistakes occur especially when you are in a hurry to fill an important position. When you’re bringing on a new employee, it’s important they know both the basics of the job and how to fit in with your business culture.

So, what are the most common hiring mistakes, and what can you do to avoid them?

Your Managers Don’t Have Necessary Interviewing Skills

Some employers think anyone can be an interviewer.

Wrong!

It takes certain skills as well as personality traits and experience to be a skilled interviewer.  Consider some of these:

  • Prepare before the interview
  • Knowledge about the job
  • Training and experience
  • Attentive listener
  • Empathetic attitude
  • Know appropriate questions to ask
  • Ability to recognize uniqueness
  • Don’t make the interview about the interviewer

Since not every hiring manager is an experienced interviewer, your managers should bone up on some techniques and tips to help avoid hiring using gut instinct.

You Don’t Pay Enough Attention to Candidates’ Fit

There’s a good deal of attention paid to a candidate’s fit with company culture. Of course, you need to find someone who will be a good fit with your current team and your overall organization’s culture. Someone who shares your beliefs, values and attitudes. However, remember your goal is hiring capable employees, not necessarily the most pleasant.  Your hiring managers’ role is to select not only the most qualified, but also the best-suited candidate.

Organization Lacks Sufficient Job Structure

There is a difference between a stiff work environment from the old days and a completely unrestrictive one without rules. It seems many workplaces have gone over to a too-relaxed environment.

Even if you wish to use a loose organization, it’s important that your new employees have some structure surrounding their position or you will have a failed hire on your hands. Order and consistency are fundamental for any business.

There are a many advantages from a structured and efficient work environment that can’t be ignored.

The trend toward a casual style of work environment has been established to increase motivation and worker productivity.  And it has worked.

But, regardless of the level of job structure that if each hire has a clear set of goals it will minimize worker stress and has the capability to increase productivity.

Not Providing the Right Training

Employees bounce so frequently job to job, and technology changes so rapidly, that you need to always be training hires.

Training and career development are among the top factors employees use to rank a job’s attractiveness or as a place to work. About half of employees indicate a firm’s training make them more likely to stay.

Yet, companies often spend more for coffee than spending for training.

Crazy!  It’s not surprising hires don’t work out.

Failing to Dismiss Underperformers

You’ve done what you can to source, hire and develop the right personnel.  Still, some don’t work out. Frequently, a manager will recognize a poor performer, but believes they will improve with just a little more grooming and development.

Uh uh.  But this is rarely the case.

Instead, time will drag on and the employee will either be pushed from one manager to another to avoid the discomfort of firing someone.  But eventually the ultimate will occur – firing them.  But the harm has already infected the job and other workers. . A poor hire will affect your bottom line, your team, and your customers, so when you perceive their inability, learn to cut them as quickly as you can.

Wrap-up

Avoid these 5 familiar hiring mistakes to improve your new employee satisfaction and boost productivity.  Not just the new hire, but the entire team.

Consider choosing a professional staffing agency skilled in sourcing and recruiting employees.

to minimize those pesky hiring mistakes.

Do you have questions about your hiring process?  Call us today for suggestions.

7 Ways to Improved Employee Performance

April 9th, 2018   •   Employer Advocate, HR, Productivity, Staffing, Workforce development   •   no comments   

Since lethargic employee performance is not beneficial to your business, let’s figure out some simple approaches to get the most out of your employees.

 

Seven Performance Approaches Yield Improved Employee Performance

 

 

1. Employee – Employer Communications

Employees are happier when their duties and responsibilities are closely aligned with their perceived roles. This is about what they feel will give them a higher level of satisfaction. If you talk to them, they will often tell you about their career aspirations and goals.

 

We all know there are times when business needs to supersede personal requirements on the job. In these cases, you can usually get a solid buy-in with sincere communications. Most people are reasonable and understand there are times when sacrifices must be made.  This interaction leads to higher employee performance in the long term.

 

2. Truthful Communications

Be truthful with all employees in business communications and about decisions made at higher levels. People can tell when they are not getting the full story. When this occurs, very little positive results come about, and it usually leads to negative feelings. Or, existing negative attitudes are reinforced and it tends to become a downward spiral.

 

3. Skill Utilization

Many employees have skill sets that are not being used either fully or at all. This is where processes that let you know about these hidden skills can be valuable.  Dig in, ask questions, let the team know what skill sets you’re needing and maybe you’ll be surprised with what lurks in your team.

Your business can save substantially if it prevents hiring or outsourcing the work to someone who is much more expensive.

 

4. Open Lines of Communication

All of us have the need to know we have a voice at work. So open lines of communication are essential for good morale. Sometimes high frustration levels build, and an employee may want to vent a little and make you aware of a situation. If needed, make a culture change if communications have not been a strong point in your company.

 

5. Process Efficiency

Your business may have the most inefficient and exasperating processes that make people want to scream every day. The only problem is you don’t know about it. Or, even worse, you do and feel it is something they can live with. It is your business, but you know that a situation and high emotional reactions only get in the way of maximum performance.

 

6. Reward & Recognition

Identify positive contributors in your organization and reward them. We all like to be recognized regardless of what it is. There are so many ways to implement a program of rewards and recognition. Some businesses started an employee of the month program. Their reward was public recognition at a monthly meeting, and they were given the best parking space for the entire month. It was well received and cost nothing to implement.  And yet the program met its goals of improved employee performance.

 

7. Training

Lastly, how well trained are your employees? Or if they are trained, do you provide training for updating their skills? This is where you will have to assess the needs and status of your business. Identifying areas for training and improving skills will repay your business with improve employee performance for years to come.

How to hire the right employee – 5 familiar mistakes

February 28th, 2018   •   Common mistakes, Hiring, HR, interview, job profile, Recruiting, Temporary Staffing, Uncategorized   •   no comments   

How to hire the right employee – are you making these mistakes?

How to Hire the Right Employee

Employers must hire enough staff to ensure the smooth operation of the business. But how do you select the right candidate for a position, mainly when there are too many candidates available to interview. In fact, the internal hiring process is rather a difficult matter for all employers.

 

If a mistake is made during the recruiting stage, the company can face negative consequences of having the wrong sort of employee mix, and maybe some legal issues to boot. It is essential recruiter to recognize and avoid the common mistakes that are made during an interview.

 

5 Familiar Hiring Mistakes – How an Employment Agency can help hire the right employee

 

Narrow-minded in hiring

Some employers want all their employees to be alike or just like them, with the same sort of strengths and weaknesses. But in that case, there will be no diversity in their teams and the weaknesses of work culture won’t be rectified by someone who has better work strengths. The recruiter should be impersonal in attitude and consider only the qualities that will suit the company or department’s open position. Temp services provided by the staffing agencies are more impartial in hiring the best candidates for their client companies.

 

Judging by candidate’s education, name or appearance

Many employers show a preference for a specific educational institution and like to hire graduates from these organizations without properly checking their personal capabilities, which can prove to be a serious mistake. Moreover, the recruiter should not hold any positive or negative notion about a candidate, based on first appearance; since many people can turn out to be valuable assets for their companies, regardless of appearance. These decisions could also lead to serious EEOC and legal ramifications.

 

Vague idea of demands of the position

The recruiter should set up a questionnaire that will test the exact capabilities of the candidates and their suitability for the open positions. A pre-structured interview will find out the hidden qualities of every candidate, so that the best one can be hired. The services offered by staffing agencies – screening, references, and all-inclusive interview processes – are highly efficient for discovering the most competent employees for their clients.

 

Not checking skills of the candidates

The recruiter should find out if the candidates have undergone extra training or completed courses, gained licenses or certifications to acquire the skills they will need to fulfill the required job skill set. If the necessary skills are missing, even post-recruitment training cannot help the new employee learn everything he needs to do. Calling past employers to verify stated skills is also important.

 

Incomplete explanation of job duties to candidates

It is the duty of the recruiter to let the candidates know in detail about their probable job duties in their company. The work culture and the salary structure should also be discussed with the candidates so that the applicant can have the option of backing out at that time if he finds the job not suitable for him.   That will save a lot of grief and extra effort if that person later discovers the job and his skills don’t match or wasn’t what he expected.

Flexicrew Staffing has the expert know-how and resources to help you hire the right employee that you might not find on your own. Let us assist you in finding the right person for your small or mid-size business. Call us TODAY!

 

“Funny thing, employment. If you keep doing it, you keep getting paid.”

― N.K. Jemisin, The Kingdom of Gods

6 Ways HR and Staffing Are Like Baseball

October 21st, 2017   •   Hiring, HR, Recruiting, Staffing, Temporary Staffing   •   no comments   

Baseball HR and Staffing – Common Traits

We at Flexicrew Staffing were talking about how baseball, HR and staffing have many traits in common. We got into this conversation because Major League Baseball’s 2017 World Series kicks off October 24.  If needed, game 7 would slide into November (Brrrr!).

Let Flexicrew help HR and staffing smooth out your workforce curve balls

HR and staffing common traits with Baseball World Series

So here’s our take on a list of 6 ways managing HR and staffing for your company is like baseball’s World Series:

 

1. Choosing your team

From baseball spring training right up to selecting the best players who will be on your playoff team, the #1 priority is firming up the roster. Contracts were taken care of over the winter, so teams already know what stars will be playing. But the utility players and the rookies…like temporary workers in a company.  Those players, just like temporary workers, continuously need to show managers or baseball coaches what they can do. And the coaches have got to look closely at the talent in front of them so they can figure out who’s going to help the team win the Series and who’s going back to the minors.

Sound familiar? One of the hardest parts of running an HR department is hiring and administering the company’s staff. And working with line supervisors to evaluate the performance of temp workers who could hit a home run for your business and for themselves by getting hired permanently.

 

2. Position your players

Coaches don’t just figure out who’s on the team. They must decide who plays what positions, come up with batting orders and pitching rotations and bench players. HR managers and hiring managers need a lot of planning to judge your staff and how best to use it. In baseball, you put your power hitter in the 4th batting position or “cleanup,” because that’s where he can drive in the most runs. Business, projects go to the best person for the job. Have a big rush order? Who’s your cleanup hitter?

 

3. Getting in shape

Baseball spring training provides a time for players to work out together, getting them in shape for the season.

An HR department in a company makes sure employees are “in shape” by giving them the tools they need to do their jobs. Whether this means recommending training so your crew can keep up with changes in the field, or providing benefits that help you maintain a healthy workplace.  Staying on top of these HR issues and making sure everyone’s ‘in shape’ will pay dividends in the long run and make for a happier workplace.

 

4. Changing the plan

As you might expect, baseball, HR and staffing have many things that don’t work out as planned – so you must be flexible. There are business peaks and valleys, so you often need a flexible workforce to match a production workload.  If something isn’t working, you don’t stick with it just because it’s written in your plan on your baseball lineup card. Players, like workers, get hurt or have slumps or sometimes just don’t perform to expectations.  Adjusting your plan to the current situation is the only way to stay on top, whether you’re trying to win baseball games or run an HR department.

 

5. The power of the pitch

In baseball, the old saying is “Pitching wins games.”  But, do you know how important it is to have a great ‘pitch’ about your business and for any current job opening? Every HR and staffing person should be able to describe their business rapidly and concisely, and be able to pitch benefits of an available job with attractive slant to top-flight candidates.

 

6. Each day is a brand new game

A pitcher can give up 5 runs one day but throw a no-hitter in his next game. Each day is a new start, a new chance to win. The best ballplayers watch video of their performances, looking for ways to improve what they did yesterday.

The most successful HR and staffing managers do something like that, though they don’t need video to look back at what they did.  You need to spend time at the end of each year and decidewhat went wrong and right.  Ask your internal ‘customers’ what could have been done better to support them.  Ask employees what support they look for from HR going forward.

Use all this to plan your next year and include those improvements to win the next World Series.

Common threads between baseball, HR and staffing

If you learn anything about HR and staffing from baseball and the World Series, it should be that preparation, staffing and adjusting are the keys to success.

And don’t forget the hot dog.

How about you?  Do you see any common threads between baseball, HR and staffing?  Let us know your thoughts.

For more information on how Flexicrew can deliver proven solutions to your business, visit http://www.flexicrew.com